Around 200 technology companies including Akamai, Facebook, and Google are set to switch to IPv6 during the World IPv6 Day trial for 24 hours on 8 June. The switch is intended to test the readiness of companies to handle IPv6 addresses and also check what could be expected when websites are obliged to enable IPv6 in the future.
The Internet Society (ISOC) says that 99.5 per cent of all users would hardly notice anything unusual tomorrow but admits there could be glitches.
According to industry sources, small businesses need not worry over the trials on Wednesday. In fact, unless companies are hosting their own web servers, small businesses have nothing to prepare for when the current IPv4 addresses are expected to be depleted next year, either.
Already, newer routers come with IPv6 support and Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7, and upcoming Windows 8, as also major Linux distributions including Red Hat and Ubuntu are IPv6-ready. All ISPs eventually would have to eventually support IPv6 addresses as well.
However, even if users' network equipment or OS does not support IPv6, they would not notice anything on 8 June or in the future.
Small businesses could also continue to use IPv4 addresses indefinitely since it would hardly be in the interest of a website owner to lock anyone or deny access to any IPv4 connection. In fact, given that IPv6 addresses are incompatible with IPv4 addresses, and vice-versa, it would be a good idea for businesses to support IPv4 until a complete switch has been achieved across the internet user spectrum.